Category: Story of the Month

Such An Easy Fix!

A Pasadena teacher contacted Families in Transition, a support program for homeless children in our school district. In addition to all the complications of being a homeless 5th grader, Albert had a toothache. One call to Young & Healthy and we were able to get him a dental appointment the same day we received his referral. The doctor was able to quickly fill the offending cavity and send him on his way. The teacher called the next day and said, “I can finally see his smile”.

Such an easy fix–when you link exactly the right two people together. There are still lots of issues for this family to deal with but Albert’s toothache isn’t one of them anymore.

A New Twist On Yard Sales

I’ve had yard sales and taught my kids about redeeming cans and bottles…to teach them the value of work, earning money and how to save for something you really want.

Their health never entered into the equation.

Not for Rosalee. Rosalee works full time and knows without a doubt that her son needs health insurance. He has epilepsy. When his monthly premiums grew to $1,000 a month, she began selling off possessions to pay the premiums. A toaster here, an old T.V. there, her clothes, old teddy bears, anything she could sell to raise the money.

Desperate, she went to a school nurse and said, “I have nothing left to sell.” Her son’s insurance had lapsed and he needed his seizure medication.

One call to Young & Healthy and one call to a volunteer neurologist–like magic her life changed. He was assessed and quickly taken care of. A volunteer pharmacist donated his medication. This young man will be a short-term client for us.

The second call was to an insurance specialist who explained that, because of a change in the law, pre-existing conditions for children were no longer “counted” when applying for insurance.

Rosalee has applied for new low-cost insurance that she can afford for her son, with no yard sales necessary.

We’ll take care of her son until the new insurance “kicks in”, and Rosalee will be BACK on her way to being the self-sufficient and resourceful mother that she’s always been.

Kaylie, Young & Healthy’s Youngest client

At only 13 hours old, Kaylie takes the prize as Young & Healthy’s youngest client ever!

Kaylie was born at home. She was taken to her pediatrician’s office to be examined. Everything seemed to be going well until her pediatrician noticed that Kaylie seemed to have hip dysplasia. The doctor told Kaylie’s parents that she was going to refer their baby to a pediatric orthopedist. Kaylie’s parents informed the pediatrician that their insurance only covered well baby visits.

Luckily, the pediatrician is a Young & Healthy volunteer and called us right away.

Our case managers were ablt to connect the family with Shriner’s Hospital for Children. Thankfully, Kaylie’s condition is one that is easily remedied. She will continue to receive follow up care and is well on her way to being a normal, happy and active infant!

A Life-Altering Moment

What started off as a routine trip became a life-altering moment for 15-year-old Adela. She, her mom, grandmother and her beloved dog set out to do routine errands. In an instant, an accident claimed the life of her mother and dog.

She was cared for at our wonderful partner hospital, Huntington Memorial. Her injuries were temporary but understandably her heartache and her grief were enormous. Grandma, too, was traumatized. Knowing that Adela was uninsured, our colleague and social worker contacted Young & Healthy for follow-up care.

While there are few therapists who specialize in grief–let alone childhood grief–Young & Healthy is lucky to have such a volunteer. Connections were made and now Adela has the ongoing support of a therapist who will help guide her through the many transitions this accident created. Life is certainly not fair, and we are grateful to this volunteer who can help Adela regain her footing.

I am just so sick, I probably won’t be around much longer

As a mother, I cannot imagine how awful it would be to hear my special needs child verbalize “I am just so sick, I probably won’t be around much longer”.

Twelve-year-old Isabella was very fragile. She had uncontrolled seizures, unexplained weight loss and found school really hard. Her mom was a little lost too, not really sure how she could help. Isabella and her brother were provided with a volunteer medical home where, for the first time, ONE doctor would provide comprehensive care. Finally someone who could really help! Many appointments and many medication adjustments later, Isabella is a bit more stable and her mom can even tackle her educational needs. Our Young & Healthy staff continues to provide translation services for all their medical appointments and has been instrumental in helping the family understand how to use the special education services available to Isabella.

Many hands make light work–many hearts give hope.